Festival season is officially underway in Sioux Falls and across the upper midwest with a huge weekend at RibFest. Not only did we have a LOT of fun, we also had to re-learn a lot of tips for the season. In case you're a novice at this whole 'festival' thing, here's some tips from your Uncle Crash on how to have fun and be prepared when heading out the door.

Know the rules: Check out the official website (or the radio station website!) to see what you're allowed to take in with you. You don't want your stuff confiscated at the entrance. With a number of vendors at most of the festivals, it's a pretty safe bet to leave the cooler at home, but bring a bag chair and cash.

Dress in layers: Temps change from day to night. Have the right clothes. This was brought to my attention by my best friends out at RibFest this weekend, where he was just concerned that he left the campsite with his beer tickets, sunglasses and some cash, while she was wondering if she should wear shorts or a hoodie depending on what the weather was going to do. Guys seem to adapt better. Women, definitely take heed of this tip so you don't want to leave early because you're cold.

Comfortable Shoes! With as much standing as we did at RibFest this weekend, it was a painful reminder to remember to wear shoes that won't give you blisters or feel like you're walking on broken glass on the way back to the car after the show.

Don't bring the bling: Leave the pricey bag and jewelry at home. It could get lost or stolen. Guys, you can help remind her of these simple rules and even help by getting her a 'festival bag', something that doesn't cost a lot, but has room for all her stuff.

Bathroom Breaks: There will be lines at most events, so give yourself plenty of time. And try to hit the stalls before or at the start of each set ... the last few songs are typically the best.

What did he say?  For the best acoustics, look for a center-stage spot.

Overcrowding: If you're feeling claustrophobic, go to the side of the stage or head toward the back. The big screens will make sure you won't miss a thing.

Meeting up: Your phone may not get reception, so designate a meet-up location with your friends.

Essentials: If you're a minimalist like I am, there are just a few things you should try to have with you (or in your wife/girlfriends purse!) when you walk out the door: cash, drivers license (if you want a beer, you're going to get carded no matter what) sunscreen (there's not a lot of shade at most of these festivals!) bug spray (we're known to get mosquito's the size of small house cats in this area of the country) sunglasses and comfortable shoes. Everything else is a luxury like cameras, bag chairs, handy wipes, etc.

Summer is officially underway in Sioux Falls and the surrounding region and it's shaping up to be a GREAT time for concert goers from the Downtown Block Parties in Sioux Falls (starting this Friday!), to Street Dances in every small town across the state, to Hot Harley Nights, JazzFest, the Sioux Empire Fair, Downtown RiverFest, to the first ever Peach Festival next month, and so much more, at least you're going to be a little more prepared to have a lot of fun during my favorite season: FESTIVAL season!